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Pakistan, India on verge of nuclear war- Pompeo

In his new biography, former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claims that in February 2019, India and Pakistan were "near" to a "nuclear firestorm."

Washington, D.C., 1 Feburary 2023 (GNP): After an attack on troops of India in Kashmir, Delhi claimed attacks against militants operating in Pakistan territory. At that time, Pakistan claimed to have downed two Indian military aircraft and kidnapped a fighter pilot. Kashmir is a region that both India and Pakistan claim as their own yet only partially govern.

Pakistan denies India’s long-standing accusation that it supports terrorist separatists in the Kashmir valley. Three conflicts have been fought between the nuclear-armed neighbours since their 1947 independence from Great Britain and division. Only one wasn’t over Kashmir.

According to Pompeo in “Never Give An Inch: Fighting for America I Love”, he don’t think the world adequately understands how close the India-Pakistan rivalry came to bursting into a nuclear firestorm in February 2019.

At a conference in Hanoi, Pompeo asserted that he would never forget the evening when India and Pakistan began exchanging threats in relation to their long-running dispute over Kashmir’s northern border region.

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India launched airstrikes within Pakistan in reaction to the attack on Indian forces that resulted in the deaths of over 40 soldiers and was termed by Pompeo as an act of Islamist terrorism that was probably made possible in part by Pakistan’s deficient counterterrorism strategy. The Pakistanis then downed a fighter and captured the Indian pilot in a combat.


A Pakistani government image to show wreckage from one of the downed Indian jets.
A Pakistani government image shows wreckage from one of the downed Indian jets.


Pompeo claimed that he was awakened in Hanoi to speak with an unnamed Indian counterpart.

He thought Pakistan had started preparing its nuclear arsenal for a strike. He told me that India was considering its own escalation, Pompeo pens a piece. I told him not to act and to allow us a moment to work things out.

The National Security Advisor at the time, John Bolton, and Mr. Pompeo started working together in the “small secure communications facility in our hotel, according to Mr. Pompeo. He claims to have spoken with General Qamar Javed Bajwa, then-chief of the Pakistani army, with whom I had interacted many times and told him what the Indians had told me.

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He claimed it was untrue. He assumed that the Indians were getting ready to use their nuclear weapons, as one might anticipate. We had to convince each side that the other was not preparing for nuclear war, which took a few hours and some really effective work from our staff in New Delhi and Islamabad.

No other country would have taken the actions we did that evening to avert a terrible catastrophe, argues Pompeo.

India and Pakistan have not yet responded to Pompeo’s assertions. Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), a Pakistan-based organization, claimed responsibility for the 2019 attack on Indian soldiers, and India pledged to retaliate.

The first aerial assaults by India across the Line of Control (LoC) that separates Indian and Pakistani territory have occurred since a conflict in 1971. Pakistan referred to India’s assertion as reckless despite the fact that India claimed to have killed many militants.